LGBTQ+ Health Updates

LGBTQ+ Health Updates

Disclosures: The authors report no relevant financial disclosures.
December 02, 2020
1 min read

Lesbian, gay and bisexual adults less likely to take statins for CVD prevention

Disclosures: The authors report no relevant financial disclosures.
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Lesbian, gay and bisexual adults who responded to an online survey were less likely to use statins for primary prevention of CVD compared with other adults, according to new data published in the Journal of the American Heart Association.

“Although substantial progress has been made in CVD prevention, disparities in CVD outcomes remain in certain population subgroups. For example, sexual and gender minority (SGM) individuals ... are at increased risk for CVD events related to elevated rates of health risk factors,” Jiang Bian, PhD, associate professor of health outcomes and biomedical informatics at University of Florida College of Medicine, and colleagues wrote. “Overall, SGM individuals have higher levels of stress related to discrimination and marginalization that has led to health behavioral issues and poor health outcomes.”

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The researchers conducted a cross-sectional online survey on statin use for primary and secondary CVD prevention; 1,531 adults responded to the Facebook-delivered survey from September to December 2019. Eighty percent of respondents were aged 40 to 75 years, 60% were women, 90% were non-Hispanic white and 12.2% self-identified as lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB).

Among all respondents, 31.6% reported current statin use.

Bian and colleagues compared differences in statin use between LGB respondents and non-LGB respondents. The rate of statin use for primary prevention was 20.8% in LGB respondents compared with 43.8% in non-LGB respondents (P < .001). The researchers noted a decrease in prevalence of statin use with age, at 40.1% among respondents aged 40 to 75 years to 37.5% among respondents older than 75 years. Statin use was lower among LGB respondents in both age groups compared with non-LGB respondents, the researchers reported.

There was no difference in the rate of statin use for secondary prevention between LGB and non-LGB respondents, according to the results.

“What we have found is very much in line with the American Heart Association’s statement for LBGTQ adults,” Bian said in a press release. “First, more research is needed to better understand the cardiovascular disease health risks and outcomes in the LGB population. Second, educational programs are needed to educate health professionals on these unique health risks and outcomes in the LGB population and the appropriate way to communicate with LGB people.”